What does sharpen mean?

Definitions for sharpen
ˈʃɑr pənsharp·en

Here are all the possible meanings and translations of the word sharpen.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. sharpenverb

    make sharp or sharper

    "sharpen the knives"

  2. sharpenverb

    make crisp or more crisp and precise

    "We had to sharpen our arguments"

  3. sharpenverb

    become sharp or sharper

    "The debate sharpened"

  4. focus, focalize, focalise, sharpenverb

    put (an image) into focus

    "Please focus the image; we cannot enjoy the movie"

  5. sharpenverb

    make (images or sounds) sharp or sharper

  6. sharpenverb

    raise the pitch of (musical notes)

  7. sharpen, taper, pointverb

    give a point to

    "The candles are tapered"

  8. sharpen, heightenverb

    make (one's senses) more acute

    "This drug will sharpen your vision"


  1. sharpenverb

    To make sharp

  2. Etymology: sharp + -en

Samuel Johnson's Dictionary

  1. To Sharpenverb

    Etymology: from sharp.

    The weaker their helps are, the more their need is to sharpen the edge of their own industry. Richard Hooker.

    The Israelites went down to the Philistines to sharpen every man his share and his coulter. 1 Sam. xiii. 20.

    His severe wrath shall he sharpen for a sword. Wisd. v. 20.

    The grating of a saw when sharpen’d, offends so much as it setteth the teeth on edge. Francis Bacon.

    Th’ squadron bright, sharp’ning in mooned horns
    Their phalanx. John Milton.

    It may contribute to his misery, heighten the anguish, and sharpen the sting of conscience, and so add fury to the everlasting flames, when he shall reflect upon the abuse of wealth and greatness. Robert South, Sermons.

    No: ’tis resistance that inflames desire;
    Sharpens the darts of love, and blows the fire. Dryd.

    E’re ten moons had sharpen’d either horn,
    To crown their bliss, a lovely boy was born. Dryd.

    Her nails are sharpen’d into pointed claws,
    Her hands bear half her weight and turn to paws. Addis.

    Overmuch quickness of wit, either given by nature, or sharpen’d by study, doth not commonly bring greatest learning, best manners, or happiest life in the end. Roger Ascham.

    Th’ air sharpen’d his visual ray
    To objects distant far. John Milton.

    Epicurean cooks
    Sharpen with cloyless sauce his appetite. William Shakespeare.

    Such an assurance as will sharpen mens desires and quicken their endeavours for obtaining a lesser good, ought to inspire men with more vigour in pursuit of what is greater. John Tillotson.

    Mine enemy sharpeneth his eyes upon me. Job xvi. 9.

    My haughty soul would swell;
    Sharpen each word, and threaten in my eyes. Smith.

    Enclosures not only preserve sound, but encrease and sharpen it. Francis Bacon.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Sharpenadjective

    to make sharp

  2. Sharpenadjective

    to give a keen edge or fine point to; to make sharper; as, to sharpen an ax, or the teeth of a saw

  3. Sharpenadjective

    to render more quick or acute in perception; to make more ready or ingenious

  4. Sharpenadjective

    to make more eager; as, to sharpen men's desires

  5. Sharpenadjective

    to make more pungent and intense; as, to sharpen a pain or disease

  6. Sharpenadjective

    to make biting, sarcastic, or severe

  7. Sharpenadjective

    to render more shrill or piercing

  8. Sharpenadjective

    to make more tart or acid; to make sour; as, the rays of the sun sharpen vinegar

  9. Sharpenadjective

    to raise, as a sound, by means of a sharp; to apply a sharp to

  10. Sharpenverb

    to grow or become sharp

  11. Etymology: [See Sharp, a.]

How to pronounce sharpen?

How to say sharpen in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of sharpen in Chaldean Numerology is: 2

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of sharpen in Pythagorean Numerology is: 9

Examples of sharpen in a Sentence

  1. Brad Anderson:

    Clearly they are ready to sharpen their contrasts on issues with each other, the debate is going to be enormously important given all the undecideds we are seeing in polls.

  2. Anuj Somany:

    Only in motivational story, the timber merchant boss will give the woodcutter the relaxing and learning time to sharpen his axe and increase the productivity; but in cruel business world, the boss will screw him up if the number of cutting trees decreases. Be practical not theoretical.

  3. Canopy Growth co-CEO Bruce Linton:

    As soon as you hear the name Martha Stewart, you know exactly who we're talking about, martha Stewart is one of a kind and I am so excited to be able to work alongside this icon to sharpen our CBD product offerings.

  4. Confucius:

    The expectations of life depend upon diligence the mechanic that would perfect his work must first sharpen his tools.

  5. Ungad Chadda:

    It allows us to sharpen our focus.

Popularity rank by frequency of use


Translations for sharpen

From our Multilingual Translation Dictionary

Get even more translations for sharpen »


Find a translation for the sharpen definition in other languages:

Select another language:

  • - Select -
  • 简体中文 (Chinese - Simplified)
  • 繁體中文 (Chinese - Traditional)
  • Español (Spanish)
  • Esperanto (Esperanto)
  • 日本語 (Japanese)
  • Português (Portuguese)
  • Deutsch (German)
  • العربية (Arabic)
  • Français (French)
  • Русский (Russian)
  • ಕನ್ನಡ (Kannada)
  • 한국어 (Korean)
  • עברית (Hebrew)
  • Gaeilge (Irish)
  • Українська (Ukrainian)
  • اردو (Urdu)
  • Magyar (Hungarian)
  • मानक हिन्दी (Hindi)
  • Indonesia (Indonesian)
  • Italiano (Italian)
  • தமிழ் (Tamil)
  • Türkçe (Turkish)
  • తెలుగు (Telugu)
  • ภาษาไทย (Thai)
  • Tiếng Việt (Vietnamese)
  • Čeština (Czech)
  • Polski (Polish)
  • Bahasa Indonesia (Indonesian)
  • Românește (Romanian)
  • Nederlands (Dutch)
  • Ελληνικά (Greek)
  • Latinum (Latin)
  • Svenska (Swedish)
  • Dansk (Danish)
  • Suomi (Finnish)
  • فارسی (Persian)
  • ייִדיש (Yiddish)
  • հայերեն (Armenian)
  • Norsk (Norwegian)
  • English (English)

Word of the Day

Would you like us to send you a FREE new word definition delivered to your inbox daily?

Please enter your email address:

Discuss these sharpen definitions with the community:



    Use the citation below to add this definition to your bibliography:


    "sharpen." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2022. Web. 13 Aug. 2022. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/sharpen>.

    Are we missing a good definition for sharpen? Don't keep it to yourself...

    Image or illustration of


    Browse Definitions.net

    Free, no signup required:

    Add to Chrome

    Get instant definitions for any word that hits you anywhere on the web!

    Free, no signup required:

    Add to Firefox

    Get instant definitions for any word that hits you anywhere on the web!


    Are you a words master?

    remove completely from recognition or memory
    • A. abduct
    • B. efface
    • C. scarper
    • D. abase

    Nearby & related entries:

    Alternative searches for sharpen: